China, India, Aviation Industry Lead Way in Boosting CO2 Emissions in 2023

Dec 6, 2023

Global CO2 Emissions

The nations of the world are pumping record amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere in 2023. That's based on a report released Tuesday at the COP28 summit in Dubai. The report came even though climate experts have been warning that failure to quickly bring down greenhouse gas emissions could doom the planet.    

The world is on track to spew nearly 41 billion tons of heat-trapping CO2 into the air in 2023. That's from the Global Carbon Project. It's a 1.1% increase from 2023. The world’s two largest nations, China and India, are leading the way. Growth in air travel is also a major factor. Combined, they are producing an increase from 2022 of 836 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.      

Emissions are decreasing by a small amount in the rest of the world in 2023. That includes emissions from the EU and the US. But the US remains the world’s second biggest greenhouse gas polluter behind China.

“We are clearly not going in the right direction,” the lead study author told The Associated Press.    

The report suggests that the chances of avoiding many of the worst effects of climate change have gotten worse. To do so, experts have stated that global temperatures must rise less than 1.5 degree Celsius (°C) above what it was 200 years ago. Many countries have signed pledges agreeing with that target. But hitting it would require major cuts in emissions. Not many governments have proven willing to make such cuts yet.     

“You would think the extreme events around the world would be sparking action," climate expert Claire Stockwell told The Guardian. But, she said, governments have not seemed to notice.  

Reflect: How might small changes in our actions make a big difference in protecting the environment?

 
Question
According to information in the infographic, CO2 emissions have been _______ over the past century. (Common Core RI.5.7; RI.6.7)
a. decreasing
b. slightly increasing
c. remaining mostly the same
d. rapidly increasing
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